You know, sometimes it’s quite a marvel to see how people behave stupidly as they try to manipulate things in an attempt to engineer a scam to take time off at their employer’s expense.
Such is the case of a South Carolina man who falsely claimed he had the Disease That Must Not Be Named (DTMNBN).
Jeffrey Travis Long, 31, of Inman, South Carolina, was arrested for allegedly forging a doctor’s note claiming he had the coronavirus. Because of this, Long’s employer — a call center in Spartanburg County — had to shut down for several days to sanitize.
In addition, parents and teachers at the school that Long’s children attended had frantic meltdowns amid concerns that he had spread the COVID-19 virus after visiting the school.
“It seems to me like the fella just wanted a two-week, paid vacation,” Spartanburg County Sheriff Chuck Wright said at a news conference. “You can’t do this to people.”
Sheriff Wright added: “I don’t know the dollar number it cost to disinfect their whole entire building, but it was a large number. It wasn’t a hundred bucks. It was more than that.”
Hospital officials told the police that Jeffrey Long’s fake doctor’s note did not have an official stamp. They also pointed out that they never saw Long at the hospital during the past two weeks so he could be tested.
Before the advent of the internet and the electronic interconnectivity we now have, this man might have gotten away with it, and any knowledge of what he did would most likely have out only on the local level or may have gone totally unnoticed. However, it’s a pity and a shame that he would stoop to such shenanigans, and doesn’t excuse his behavior.
I know I’ve personally witnessed an employee abuse company FMLA policies to avoid going to work. He had a family member that was disabled to such a degree that he could take an FMLA day off with the claim that he was taking care of her, and the company had no recourse but to allow it. When all of his paid vacation time and other paid days off were factored in, he was committed to about 194 days of work in a 12-month period (if he covered his own shift as bid), and yet he only worked about 85 of those days.
I know the above case is pretty extreme, but up until now, I’ve never seen someone deliberately fake a diagnosis of a disease considered to be a worldwide pandemic to take a couple of weeks of vacation at company expense. There were a LOT of people that were affected by his stunt, unlike the person I knew whose actions only directly impacted a relative few.